About Us

We envision an Orange County in which all children reach their full potential. The groundwork for this vision is set during a child’s earliest years. First 5 Orange County partners with many organizations working towards creating and maintaining an early childhood system that families experience as a seamless network of care.
young children playing with plastic bugs on a table in a day care setting

Building a Strong Foundation

Each child is unique, and every child’s full potential will look different. We know from years of research that a child’s experiences during their early years establish a foundation that, if strong, sets children up to achieve more in school and life, be physically healthier and more emotionally resilient, and participate more in society.

At First 5 Orange County, we recognize the strengths that families bring to each child’s foundation, and aim to build bridges so children of every culture, color, and condition can thrive without barriers. In partnership with health, social service, family support, and education agencies in Orange County, we provide programs and initiatives that build up children and encourage whole family engagement and health.

Our Core Values

Here at First 5 Orange County, we use our core values to continuously guide our interactions, operations, and decisions.



We recognize and value the inherent worth of all coworkers, partners, and community members and treat everyone with the same level of appreciation, kindness, understanding, and helpfulness.



Through collaboration, dedication, and effective communication, we work together to fulfill our mission to serve the children and families of Orange County to the best of our collective ability.



Through reliability, personal and organizational responsibility, and honesty, we honor commitments to teammates, partners, and the community.

A young girl rests on her dad's shoulder
young children playing with plastic bugs on a table in a day care setting

Our History

First 5 Orange County was created as a result of Proposition 10, the California Children and Families Act of 1998, which added a 50-cent sales tax on tobacco products sold in California. Prop 10 required that funds raised be used to support education, health and child development programs for children from the prenatal stage through age 5.

Since our inception more than 20 years ago, First 5 Orange County has become a leading convener and collaborator, as well as a valued capacity builder and funder of best practices with an emphasis on elevating equity. In these roles, we offer the community deep expertise on the importance of early childhood in human development and the conditions that children and families need to thrive.

We cultivate strong relationships with our community partners and support innovative, research-based services that have been shown to improve outcomes. We engage directly with families and neighborhoods to offer them the information and tools they need to become advocates for their young children.

Finally, we promote a “system-level perspective” that recognizes the importance of seamless cross-agency coordination to improve the family experience and child outcome.

First 5 Orange County’s Ongoing Commitment to Equity


First 5 Orange County is committed to promoting equity and ensuring that all children in our community have an equal opportunity to reach their full potential and thrive. To First 5 OC, equity means that every child deserves the support and resources they need to succeed, regardless of their background or circumstance.

Equity differs from equality. Equality means providing the same level of opportunity and assistance to all. Equity means providing different levels of support and assistance depending on specific needs or abilities.

Click here to download a PDF in English of the Equity Commitment.

If you would like the PDF translated into a different language, please contact Cristina Blevins at (714) 567-0150 or Cristina.Blevins@cfcoc.ocgov.com.

EQUALITY: Everyone gets the same – regardless if it’s needed or right for them.

EQUITY: Everyone gets what they need – understanding the barriers, circumstances and conditions.

To achieve this, we are committed to engaging with parents and families to ensure their voices are heard and their perspectives are included in our decision-making processes. We believe that parents and families are the experts on their own children and are essential partners in promoting the healthy development of our community’s children. We will continue to partner with and support service providers and other early childhood system partners as they are fundamental in providing services and supports directly to families.

First 5 Orange County is uniquely positioned to support equity in our many roles including as a partner, funder, convener, service provider and policy advocate. We call on our partners, stakeholders, and community members to join us in this commitment to promoting equity and ensuring that all children have the opportunities they need to succeed. Together, we can create a bright future for the children in Orange County.

Grounding Values

Partnering with Communities

We believe that in order to responsibly support families and children, organizations and institutions need to listen to and partner with families in meaningful ways to create systems that work for them and their children.

Fostering Diversity and Belonging

We believe that Orange County is a better place because of the vast diversity in race, ethnicity, culture, faith, ability and life experiences of its residents. We believe that children and families deserve to feel a strong sense of belonging to their community, however they choose to define it.

Promoting Equity

We are committed to ensuring that every child has an equal opportunity to succeed, regardless of their race, zip code, income level, ability, or any other personal characteristic. We believe that every child deserves the support and resources they need to reach their full potential and thrive, and we will work to eliminate any barriers that may prevent them from doing so.

Using Data

We are also committed to using data, such as our Early Development Index data, to inform our work and identify areas where disparities and inequities exist. This data allows us to understand the specific challenges and needs of our community and work with families to develop targeted strategies and interventions to address them.

Principles for Equity Accountability

Underlying these priority focus areas are six equity principles, which describe how we will do this work.

Reduce harm with how data is collected, analyzed and shared

Start the conversation about equity at the earliest opportunities

Strive to build trusting relationships with partners and communities

Build capacity to represent and carry out an ongoing commitment to equity through onboarding and training

Leverage F5OC’s privilege and responsibility to listen to, represent, and amplify the community’s voice

Center the language of the majority audience or participants, not defaulting to English

Equity Accountability

We understand that having an Equity Commitment is not enough; we also need to measure our progress, hold ourselves accountable, and consider the potential for unintended harm on the community from our activities. In order to do this, First 5 Orange County is committed to creating and consistently updating a living, organizational accountability action plan that lives in concert with this Equity Commitment.

We identified four priority areas in which we will hold ourselves accountable. For each of these areas, we also identified a desired outcome to work on, shown below. We will report progress on these desired outcomes and our specific activities to achieve them through Strategic Plan Action Plan reports at every First 5 Orange County Board meeting. Over time, as needed, we will outline new desired outcomes and related activities to continue progressing towards greater equity.

Center community voice

Desired Outcome: Collect and use community voice consistently to improve equity in our programs and our partners knowledge.

Utilize and uplift data

Desired Outcome: Use data to inform our funding practices, empower community partners to take action with data.


Desired Outcome: Increase equitable practices with community partners through support and accountability.

Establish Internal Operational Practices

Desired Outcome: Embed language access for all First 5 Orange County information and materials.